Maji Manji – Gaijinhan

Maji Manji

A particular phrase has been very popular among teenagers, that is マジ卍 (maji manji). 

Maji means “really,” and nobody really knows what manji means.

When asked, these teens say it doesn’t mean anything. So how do you use something that has no meaning? These younger demographic proudly explains, you can use it in response to anything and basically add “manji” to the end of anything; what’s important is not the meaning but how you feel. Well, how do I place emotions behind a word that has no meaning?

There are various hypotheses to how this word came about, including a typo of “maji,” but my concern is less about the source of the word. I think it’s perfectly fine if someone makes a mistake and it becomes funny to use it to poke fun, and then it spreads. In this case, the purpose behind using the word is known. But almost everyone using it has no idea how and where it came from, and worse, they are even certain that the word has no meaning. Which means, there really is no meaning behind using “maji manji” apart from “because everyone else is using it.”

That’s as good as articulating any random sound.

Have humans degenerated into a being where we are just producing sound that has no meaning?

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